Man charged with vehicle, cottage break-ins

Unlocked vehicles were targeted, according to police.

Edgartown Police arrested Richard O'Connor on charges of breaking and entering charges and larceny charges.

Richard O’Connor was arrested by Edgartown Police on Wednesday, April 13, for multiple breaking and entering charges and larceny charges. Edgartown Police Lt. Chris Dolby told The Times O’Connor will be arraigned at Edgartown District Court on Friday. 

Officer Jake Sylvia wrote in the police report he had been contacted on Sunday, April 10, by a man who reported that it “appeared as though someone had been in his vehicle in the overnight hours.” The man told Sylvia that the glove box was open and several items were strewn about in the passenger compartment. Additionally, a pair of prescription eyeglasses were missing. The report stated the man had left his vehicle unlocked in his driveway. Sylvia wrote there were no cameras on the property to assist in his investigation. 

This situation was similar for the five vehicles that were rummaged through, according to the report. The cars were left unlocked overnight and were located on Peases Point Way, Kelly Street, Pent Lane, Winter Street, and North Summer Street. Some of the cars had items taken from them, including a bag of quarters worth $10, a $20 bill, and a Black Dog hat. The report additionally said Officer Gary Kovack, who was working with Sylvia on the case, was approached by Father Paul Fedak of St. Elizabeth’s Church that O’Connor had tresspassed onto the church property.

O’Connor had been seen by overnight officers walking in Edgartown’s downtown area at night and his proximity to the rummaged cars made him a “person of interest” for the case, according to the report. The report also said O’Connor stayed at the church during the night. However, officers were unable to find O’Connor to locate him for questioning. 

In another report, written by Officer Michael O’Rourke, O’Connor was found at Alchemy in Edgartown on Tuesday, April 12. According to the report, O’Connor had requested the restaurant staff to call him an ambulance because “he was cold and needed a place to sleep for tonight,” adding his medications had run out. O’Rourke wrote in the report O’Connor was “alert and attentive” during the conversation and then “made a spontaneous statement he broke into a gingerbread cottage” in Oak Bluffs the night before. The report said Edgartown EMS had arrived by this time and O’Connor repeated that story. 

O’Rourke later questioned O’Connor at the hospital, who had been transported by the ambulance, according to the report. O’Rourke wrote in the report that O’Connor had consumed four beers that night, and when asked if he felt buzzed or drunk O’Connor reportedly said, “It’s wearing off now. I feel a bit hungry but pretty good for a homeless guy.”

O’Rourke wrote that O’Connor told him he was not under the influence of any other drugs or substances. According to the report, O’Connor told O’Rourke that he went to look for a place to sleep after a free meal from Sharky’s in Oak Bluffs. He walked into the Martha’s Vineyard Camp Meeting Association’s gingerbread house area and pulled on doors to find an unlocked one. O’Connor told O’Rourke in the report that he found a “French door” that was locked but easily opened. He told O’Rourke he did not steal anything and “was just looking for a place to sleep” in the report. O’Connor could not provide description or location of the house. 

According to the report, O’Connor confessed to breaking into a car near St. Elizabeth Street looking for money so he could buy breakfast at the Dock Street Diner the following morning. When asked by O’Rourke how he got into the vehicles, O’Connor told him he went around pulling on door handles looking for unlocked cars. 

O’Rourke wrote in the report that O’Connor was very cooperative and “left the hospital without incident.” 

In a Facebook post, Edgartown police reminded residents to keep their vehicles locked.